Man Gets State Prison for Statutory Sexual Assault

CLEARFIELD – A Mahaffey man who was found guilty of statutory sexual assault was sentenced to state prison Tuesday in Clearfield County Court.

James Turner Jr., 31, 6569 Main St., Mahaffey, was also found guilty of indecent assault on person less than 16 years old and corruption of minors after a trial in October. He was acquitted of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and rape at that time.

Clearfield County Judge Paul E. Cherry sentenced him to one to five years in state prison and two years of probation. He was ordered not to have any contact with anyone under the age of 18 and to complete the Project Point of Light program. Under the new Megan’s Law requirements, he will have to register his address with law enforcement.

Prior to sentencing, the victim’s father addressed the court stating he thought he could trust Turner and he was a friend.

“Now you disgust me,” he said. He commented that Turner had said the girl was like family and questioned how Turner treats his own family. He added that Turner was walking around like nothing happened.

A statement by the victim was read by her sister. In it she mentioned that her life had changed forever and she was no longer able to enjoy being a teenager.  She wrote, “I had to grow up fast.”

Cherry scolded Turner asking what he was doing with someone half his age and stating Turner had changed the life of this young lady who may never recover from what he did to her.

District Attorney William A. Shaw Jr. said there was no doubt Turner was guilty because hisDNAwas found in her vagina. Instead of taking responsibility, Turner claimed he had sex with his wife who left her dirty underwear in the bathroom, where the victim took it and put it on.

The charges stem from an incident in September of 2010 in Newburg Borough, where the then 15-year-old girl who was babysitting his children claimed Turner raped her.

Her testimony on the first day of the trial detailed how she was sleeping in Turner’s bed when he came upstairs, and got into the bed with her. He forced her to perform oral sex on him. They then went downstairs where she said he pulled off her pants and underwear before raping her, she said.

Physical evidence included photos of bruises on the victim and DNA results that matched Turner. Testimony from the defense on the first day included witnesses that claimed the victim was saying she had sex with Turner willingly and would do it again. According to these witnesses, she didn’t describe it as rape until after she talked with her father who encouraged her to call police.

The second day of the trial began with Turner testifying in his own defense. He explained that the victim was living with his family and looked after his children because she didn’t get along with her mother who lived nearby.

The night of the incident was like any other except that he was home when his wife left to work the night shift at a nursing home. He said he and the girl wrestled on the steps with the kids. It was during this that he claims the victim kicked him in the “privates” twice and grabbed him before he told her to stop. He denied touching her inappropriately or having sex with her.

Mandy Turner had testified she had sex with her husband then later put her underwear in a hamper before she showered. She claimed the underwear taken as evidence and tested forDNAwas that same underwear.

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